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Death by chocolate-covered broccoli: A case where gamification killed gaming practice

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Death by chocolate-covered broccoli: A case where gamification killed gaming practice

Cautionary tale about rewards and achievements and rankings, using the story of a WoW raid group and their implosion. :)
Presentation for Canadian Communication Association 2013

Cautionary tale about rewards and achievements and rankings, using the story of a WoW raid group and their implosion. :)
Presentation for Canadian Communication Association 2013

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Death by chocolate-covered broccoli: A case where gamification killed gaming practice

  1. 1. DEATH BY CHOCOLATE- COVERED BROCCOLI: A CASE WHERE GAMIFICATION KILLED GAMING PRACTICE CANADIAN COMMUNICATION ASSOCIATION 2013 MARK CHEN @MCDANGER G:MARKDANGERCHEN COMMUNICATING THE DIVERSE DEBATES AND DIVISIONS WITHIN GAME STUDIES KELLY BERGSTROM FLORENCE CHEE THORSTEN BUSCH CHRIS PAUL
  2. 2. GAMIFICATION? • Provide incentives to non-game activity • Why do people love games? • Fun and challenging: Exploration of interesting constraints • Social and culturally rich • Rewarding
  3. 3. GAMIFICATION? • Provide incentives to non-game activity • Why do people love games? • Fun and challenging: Exploration of interesting constraints • Social and culturally rich • Rewarding Let’s just do this part! The other stuff’s too hard.
  4. 4. GAMIFICATION? • Provide incentives to non-game activity • Why do people love games? • Fun and challenging: Exploration of interesting constraints • Social and culturally rich • Rewarding
  5. 5. GAMIFICATION? • Provide incentives to non-game activity • Why do people love games? • Fun and challenging: Exploration of interesting constraints • Social and culturally rich • Rewarding For more: Deterding’s keynote and Nicholson’s Meaningful Gamification talk (both GLS 2012) Why problematic?
  6. 6. EMERGENT PRACTICE IN WORLD OF WARCRAFT Raiding with “The 7/10 Split” • 10-month ethnography • 60-person group • Fall 2005-Summer 2006 • Role-play server • Early days of WoW
  7. 7. EMERGENT PRACTICE IN WORLD OF WARCRAFT Raiding with “The 7/10 Split” • 10-month ethnography • 60-person group • Fall 2005-Summer 2006 • Role-play server • Early days of WoW
  8. 8. EMERGENT PRACTICE IN WORLD OF WARCRAFT A play space = a “mangle” (Pickering; Steinkuehler) • constant renegotiation of agendas and roles dynamic and emergent activity Expertise development is socialization into expert groups, learning to do what experts do (Collins & Evans) Emergent practice -> emergent values, motivations • For The 7/10 Split: Friendship, hanging out, and having fun!
  9. 9. Initial meltdown prevented by realignment / reiteration of group values HANGING OUT AND HAVING FUN
  10. 10. I love our raid. I know we are all going to get burned out at times and frustrated and upset and disagree with one another. It is part of being human. We are like brothers and sisters really. Stuff like this is going to happen. Initial meltdown prevented by realignment / reiteration of group values HANGING OUT AND HAVING FUN
  11. 11. New tools from WoW community distributed cognition (Hutchins) EXPERTISE DEVELOPMENT: KENCO’S THREAT METER
  12. 12. EXPERTISE DEVELOPMENT: RATING PERFORMANCE New, smarter ways to play: • Improving efficiency • keeping track of progress
  13. 13. EXPERTISE DEVELOPMENT: SOCIOMATERIAL PRACTICE New, smarter ways to play: • Improving efficiency • keeping track of progress
  14. 14. VICTORY!
  15. 15. VICTORY!
  16. 16. NORMALIZATION OF PRACTICE Learning underlying system turned into: • focusing more on efficiency • emphasizing progress and surveillance Official ways to rate / reward progress: • guild rankings based solely on raid content • Later: gearscore, achievements
  17. 17. New emphasis in contention with initial values Massive Meltdown* DISSOLUTION *but actually only partly responsible. Other factors: changing schedules, frustration over recent failures, etc.
  18. 18. New emphasis in contention with initial values Massive Meltdown* DISSOLUTION I thought of you as a friend, and now you treat me like this? Insult me to my face? I don’t understand it. *but actually only partly responsible. Other factors: changing schedules, frustration over recent failures, etc.
  19. 19. GAMIFICATION KILLED GAMING Gamification normalizes legitimate play. Rewarding certain forms of play marginalizes other forms of play. WoW focused more and more on efficient boss fights and loot acquisition, killing The 7/10 Split raid.
  20. 20. RECLAIMING GAMIFICATION Sebastian Deterding Gameful design http://codingconduct.cc/ Scott Nicholson Meaningful gamification http://www.scottnicholson.com/
  21. 21. DEATH BY CHOCOLATE- COVERED BROCCOLI: A CASE WHERE GAMIFICATION KILLED GAMING PRACTICE CANADIAN COMMUNICATION ASSOCIATION 2013 MARK CHEN @MCDANGER G:MARKDANGERCHEN COMMUNICATING THE DIVERSE DEBATES AND DIVISIONS WITHIN GAME STUDIES KELLY BERGSTROM FLORENCE CHEE THORSTEN BUSCH CHRIS PAUL
  22. 22. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS
  23. 23. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS
  24. 24. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS Yo, over here! !
  25. 25. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS rogue (DPS) warrior (tank) priest (healer) mage (DPS) Yeah, hit me!
  26. 26. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS rogue (DPS) warrior (tank) priest (healer) mage (DPS) pew pew! Yeah, hit me! +300 +120
  27. 27. Tripartite roles: tank, healer, DPS rogue (DPS) warrior (tank) priest (healer) mage (DPS) pew pew! Yeah, hit me! +300 +120 Has the most threat and monster “aggro”
  28. 28. Threat and aggro Time 1 Player Ability Activated Threat Generated (hypothetical) Existing Threat Total Threat (hypothetical) Wendy (tank) Sunder 260 780 1040 Rand (DPS) Sinister Strike 140 560 700 Shaun (healer) L. Healing Wave 400 400 800 Mandy (DPS) Frostbolt 500 0 500 Time 2 Player Ability Activated Threat Generated (hypothetical) Existing Threat Total Threat (hypothetical) Wendy (tank) Sunder 260 1040 1300 Rand (DPS) Sinister Strike 140 700 840 Shaun (healer) L. Healing Wave 400 800 1200 Mandy (DPS) Frostbolt 500 500 1000 Back to KTM

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